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Determination of the role of MADS complex formation in seed and ovule development

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Published on 26 March 2021
Project summary
MADS transcription factors (TFs) are master regulators of floral organ development. By forming different hetero-tetramers with others MADS partners, MADS TFs regulate expression of specific sets of genes and trigger specific developmental programs. SEPALLATA3 (SEP3) is a key MADS TF in flower organ development and SEP3, or one of its sister clade members, is required in all tetrameric MADS complexes studied to date. MADS function in ovules and seed development have been proposed but no in planta data have yet established the requirement for hetero-tetramer formation in these developmental programs. Based on our preliminary data, we have designed peptides and small proteins that target the tetramerisation interface of SEP3. Using these as tools to probe in planta function, we will determine the role of tetrameric MADS complexes in seed and ovule development. The aim of this project is 1) to produce and characterize tetramerisation inhibitor peptides and proteins 2) to validate their ability to disrupt tetramer formation in vivo using yeast two-hybrid experiments and in vitro via band shift assays and fluorescence anisotropy experiments and 3) to investigate how their expression in planta affects specific programs of seed and ovule development. These studies will reveal how tetramerisation of MADS TFs impacts function at both the molecular and phenotypic level. Experience in molecular and plant biology is a plus but not required.

Host laboratory
StrucDev team.

MADS, protein interaction and dynamic, flower.

Véronique Hugouvieux

Call for students applications. Academic year 2021-2022

In the framework of the Chemistry Biology Health (CBH) Graduate School of Université Grenoble Alpes, the GRAL research programme funds MSc (Master 2) research scholarships.

We seek motivated candidates planning to:

attend one of the following Master programmes (2nd year MSc / Master 2 / M2) at Université Grenoble Alpes (taught in English):
Master in Biology:
Structural Biology of Pathogens
Immunology, Microbiology, Infectious Diseases
Neurobiology, Neurosciences
Physiology, Epigenetics Development, Cell Differentiation

Master in Plant Biology:
PLANTA International

& do a research internship in Integrated & Structural Cell Biology at one of the labs associated with the GRAL programme in Grenoble: IBS, PCV, BS, and CBM.

A maximum of 6 GRAL scholarships of 8 000 € are offered to cover the academic year from September 2021 to June 2022, which includes 4 months of courses and 6 months of research internship.

The call is open to EU and non-EU students.

The candidates must send their application in a unique pdf file to anne-mathilde.thierry _at_ (e-mail subject: M2-2021-LastName) before May 14th 2021 (23:59, CET), including:

A cover letter indicating the selected MSc programme at Université Grenoble Alpes, and 2 choices (ranked) for the 6-month research internship project
Diplomas and copies of academic transcripts for the last 2 academic years (translated to French or English if appropriate)
For non-native English speakers, level of language proficiency (e.g. TOEIC, Bulats, etc.)
One letter of recommendation
E-candidate portal application number

We strongly recommend that the candidates take contact with the potential supervisor(s) for the research project(s) of interest.

The applications will be evaluated by a selection committee composed of representatives of the GRAL Directory and the Master programmes.

The scholarship is conditional to the registration to one of the above programmes of the master’s degree in Biology of Université Grenoble Alpes, and to the recipient maintaining a satisfactory academic record in the programme. The admission to a 2nd year MSc programme (M2) at Université Grenoble Alpes is fully independent of the GRAL Scholarship. Application deadlines may differ between the different programmes. See admission requirements on Université Grenoble Alpes’s website:


Opening of the call for applications: March 1st 2021
Applications must be submitted by May 14th 2021
Results: June 2021

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